COLUMBIA, MISSOURI—Fifty-eight members of the Kansas City and St. Louis congregations of the Philadelphia Church of God shared a picnic lunch on August 27 at Albert-Oakland Park in Columbia. The site of the summer picnic is the halfway point between the sister congregations.
Instead of the usual blistering summer heat and high humidity, the outing was blessed with cooler temperatures, moderate humidity and cloud cover during the first half of the day. The weather forecast called for rain, but the showers did not begin until the picnic had ended.
Brethren participated in a wide range of sports activities, including softball, sand volleyball and basketball. Young children played on the playground and tried kickball and tag. Kansas City deacon Wes McQuown and others went for a scenic riverside trail hike in the early afternoon. Children and adults of all ages played board games together beneath the shaded park pavilion.
“In my opinion, the overall atmosphere of the picnic could be described as upbeat and peaceful,” Kansas City member Cody Murphy said. “It felt like attending a family reunion.”
After a midday meal organized by St. Louis deacon Randy Woemmel and his wife, deaconess Toni Woemmel, Kansas City deacon Mark Arnfield held a random drawing for those in attendance. Door prizes such as 3-D puzzles and whiffle ball sets were awarded to the winners.
“We live so far from most other members and don’t get to fellowship as much as we would like to,” St. Louis member Tony Stepter said. “We absolutely love being with our Church family.”